While it might be the worst kept secret in the world that Apple is planning on switching form Samsung to TSMC for A-series chip production, rumors are this morning that the switch might start to happen as early as Q2 2013.
Taipei Times says:
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, the world’s biggest contract chipmaker, is likely to secure orders from Apple Inc to produce next-generation processors “starting as early as the second quarter of 2013,” Credit Suisse said last week.
The projected timeframe would come “earlier than expected,” Manish Nigam, head of the brokerage’s non-Japan Asia technology research division, said in note to clients on Friday, citing their recent checks with several equipment suppliers and other companies in Japan, Taiwan and China.
Given the resources (in the billions of dollars) it has been projected for Apple and TSMC to make this kind of switch, either they have been working on this project longer than we all thought, or they have found a way to accelerate the process.